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  • Age, power and generation

    I'm reading just now Vampire the Dark Ages V20, and - not for the first time - I noticed that some sources vaguely state that age itself can empower a vampire's blood regardless of his generation.
    I've yet to found clear rules about ( or even vague rules ).

    There is anything more specific, somewhere, in some supplement, about vampire's blood becoming stronger with age? ( of course, I'm talking about oWod )

  • #2
    Originally posted by Solomon Draak View Post
    I'm reading just now Vampire the Dark Ages V20, and - not for the first time - I noticed that some sources vaguely state that age itself can empower a vampire's blood regardless of his generation.
    I've yet to found clear rules about ( or even vague rules ).

    There is anything more specific, somewhere, in some supplement, about vampire's blood becoming stronger with age? ( of course, I'm talking about oWod )
    V:tDA V20 unfortunately reads as fanfiction (to me at least) as for your question... the whole process of gaining experience is the answer. As a cainite grows in age it gains more and more experience which translates into power, it has more skills, its attributes grow to the peak of human ability (or more, depending on generation) and it acquires more powers of the blood (i.e. discipline dots). There are even rules to transform downtime activities into experience points.


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    • #3
      Yeah, it's simply experience. But, in V5, there's also Blood Potency, which increases with age *and* experience. So you could crib those rules. If you search the forum, there are a few stabs at bringing Blood Potency into pre-V5 VTM.


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      • #4
        I think the OP excludes V5 here.

        It's rare, but I completely agree with Haquim here; DAV20 often reads more like fanfiction than a professional product (still thinking about whether or not the entire Ahrimanes section was meant to be parody) There's of course some very good things in DAV20, but there is a lot of silly or downright criminally awful ideas in there (Assamites crystalizing their enemies hearts for future consumption is NOT an ok level 1 discipline power for a clan that has been moving away from a stereotype of being pure monsters)

        In any case. A 10th gen of 1000 years is going to be more powerful than a 10th gen at 100, and both depress a 10th gen at 10 years. Still, I think the power of aging is diminishing returns; you'll get your main powers within the first 50 years or so, the difference between 10 and 100 is a lot bigger than the difference between 100 and 300. Nobody's immune to a tallented fledgling with a cunning plan.

        In my (I think very probable) headcannon, vampires improve their attributes by feeding from people with the desired attributes over the years. Because an undead who physically can't change shouldn't be gaining strength by lifting weights and who knows how one can gain more intelligence, but a parasite who sucks upon the gains of athletes or predates upon students for their academic talent? That's thematically too perfect. Using this line of thought, unless someone's exclusively feeding from the meagre (an unlikely Ventrue weakness, but maybe there is one such unfortunate) then it's inevitable that they'll eventually accumulate a strong foundation of attributes even if they never practice their skills.


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        • #5
          Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
          I think the OP excludes V5 here. [... ]

          In my (I think very probable) headcannon, vampires improve their attributes by feeding from people with the desired attributes over the years. Because an undead who physically can't change shouldn't be gaining strength by lifting weights and who knows how one can gain more intelligence, but a parasite who sucks upon the gains of athletes or predates upon students for their academic talent? That's thematically too perfect. Using this line of thought, unless someone's exclusively feeding from the meagre (an unlikely Ventrue weakness, but maybe there is one such unfortunate) then it's inevitable that they'll eventually accumulate a strong foundation of attributes even if they never practice their skills.
          And yet this is a very logic and clever evolution of the "You are what you eat" V5 rules.

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          • #6
            MyWifeIsScary

            "predates upon students for their academic talent"
            Do you mean to say academics tend to have higher intelligence? Or do you mean to say drinking from math scholars makes you understand advanced math theory without study? The first I could get behind, the learning through blood osmosis might be where we part ways. I enjoyed your post though either way.

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            • #7
              I wouldn't even say that age brings meager results, because age brings almost every result, even if they diminish with time.

              We tend to equate Generation with the Power of the Elders, but what Generation actually brings to the table? Higher caps is cool, but without XP it is nothing. It gives Blood Pool size, expenditure rate and higher limits to improving Physicals by pumping Blood.

              Now, those are cool benefits. But... not that much by themselves. A 3rd Gen Neonate has the same dots of a 13th Gen Neonate, and if you assume a normal distribution instead of a player optimizing the character (and I must stress: I have nothing at all against optimizing your character), that hardly means a single Discipline at 3 dots, much less 6.

              The Blood Pool is also very hard to manage. Yes, you may be able to accumulate 100 BP, the equivalent of draining completely 10 mortals of their precious blood. But to acquire that you must actually feed on that much blood, and slaughtering 5 people a night to keep your reserves isn't exactly feasible to the average Neonate. It isn't better just because you're a 3rd Gen Neonate. So how much Vitae you actually spend on a regular basis?

              A "typical" Elder surpass lesser vampires on XP alone, that's the benefit of age. Being able to have at least two Disciplines at 5 and four Disciplines total easily trumps any initial benefit of Generation. And then you start to have the power to even use all those BP/round on something else than Regeneration and Physical bonuses, and the resources to manage that big a herd as to accommodate the expenditure.


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              • #8
                Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
                I wouldn't even say that age brings meager results, because age brings almost every result, even if they diminish with time.

                We tend to equate Generation with the Power of the Elders, but what Generation actually brings to the table? Higher caps is cool, but without XP it is nothing. It gives Blood Pool size, expenditure rate and higher limits to improving Physicals by pumping Blood.

                Now, those are cool benefits. But... not that much by themselves. A 3rd Gen Neonate has the same dots of a 13th Gen Neonate, and if you assume a normal distribution instead of a player optimizing the character (and I must stress: I have nothing at all against optimizing your character), that hardly means a single Discipline at 3 dots, much less 6.

                The Blood Pool is also very hard to manage. Yes, you may be able to accumulate 100 BP, the equivalent of draining completely 10 mortals of their precious blood. But to acquire that you must actually feed on that much blood, and slaughtering 5 people a night to keep your reserves isn't exactly feasible to the average Neonate. It isn't better just because you're a 3rd Gen Neonate. So how much Vitae you actually spend on a regular basis?

                A "typical" Elder surpass lesser vampires on XP alone, that's the benefit of age. Being able to have at least two Disciplines at 5 and four Disciplines total easily trumps any initial benefit of Generation. And then you start to have the power to even use all those BP/round on something else than Regeneration and Physical bonuses, and the resources to manage that big a herd as to accommodate the expenditure.

                I disagree with most of this, the create elder character supplement Elysium gave elders more dots even before age extra freebie points. Spending say 8 blood a round is a Huge advantage over the vampire limited to 1 a turn.

                Having a large blood pool is not hard to manage, it's easier. Just because you can hold many humans worth of blood doesn't mean you just burn through it every night. There is no need to drain 5 humans a night just to maintain your blood pool. You spend the same amount (1BP) to rise each night that the 13th gen vampire does. It would be silly if you needed to replace 50 blood a day just to maintain.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Vamps Like Us View Post
                  I disagree with most of this, the create elder character supplement Elysium gave elders more dots even before age extra freebie points. Spending say 8 blood a round is a Huge advantage over the vampire limited to 1 a turn.
                  The rules for creating Elders are for creating elders. They give you more dots precisely because they're meant to create an older vampire, regardless of Generation (despite they also giving a lower Generation). The rules for a Neonate are the same regardless of Generation.

                  And the Blood Point part was about what spending those resources "as an Elder" entails. The point is precisely that a Neonate of low Generation won't spend as an Elder just because they have a bigger pool. Instead they'll likely make a fairly similar use of Blood most of the time to other Neonates of higher Generation. They can use more when push comes to shove, but the logistics of recovering this blood means it will probably be a last resource to burn through more than 4 BP in a single scene.

                  It isn't a huge advantage. Big, not huge. At least not while your main uses for it are boosting Physicals for a scene and regenerating. Not that those aren't good options, but boosting that much is that much expensive, and regeneration does not make you actually stronger than whatever you're facing. All in all it's an advantage, but not by any measure greater than just having more dots to spend on everything else.


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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Manfr View Post

                    And yet this is a very logic and clever evolution of the "You are what you eat" V5 rules.
                    In the same way modern medicine is comparable to TCM, right?
                    Ressonances are total quackery, literally built upon ancient medical ideas that are agreed upon today to be totally fucking stupid. They're as intuitive as flamable and inflamible meaning the same thing. There's also no precedent for it in vampire pop culture, nor folklore.
                    Vampires being attracted to beautiful people and strong heroes is a staple of the genre. Good dieting improving your health is also... common sense. It's perfectly intuitive. .


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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
                      The rules for creating Elders are for creating elders. They give you more dots precisely because they're meant to create an older vampire, regardless of Generation (despite they also giving a lower Generation). The rules for a Neonate are the same regardless of Generation.

                      And the Blood Point part was about what spending those resources "as an Elder" entails. The point is precisely that a Neonate of low Generation won't spend as an Elder just because they have a bigger pool. Instead they'll likely make a fairly similar use of Blood most of the time to other Neonates of higher Generation. They can use more when push comes to shove, but the logistics of recovering this blood means it will probably be a last resource to burn through more than 4 BP in a single scene.

                      It isn't a huge advantage. Big, not huge. At least not while your main uses for it are boosting Physicals for a scene and regenerating. Not that those aren't good options, but boosting that much is that much expensive, and regeneration does not make you actually stronger than whatever you're facing. All in all it's an advantage, but not by any measure greater than just having more dots to spend on everything else.


                      Actually just being made from elder blood gave you the extra dots before the need to purchase the age background to make you older and more powerful, but it's just a couple books that had low generation creation rules like that and you may not have played second edition.

                      If you are 5th generation in a round or two you have 8s in the physical stats, if you are 13th generation pumping 1 for a couple rounds you have 4s and at best, leaving no room to power disciplines, so you may not be able to pump your stats at all if you want to do other things. The 5th gen has plenty of room to power things like claws and celerity on top of stat boosting. There's very little chance the fight between two new characters even with similar starting physical abilities will not end up with the low generation vampire winning. If you don't want to call that a huge advantage, or want to complain about replacing spent blood when the 5th gen still has more in his body than the 13th gens maximum blood pool, even after a couple rounds of blood spent to max out stats and use disciplines, than I think your arguing semantics.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                        In the same way modern medicine is comparable to TCM, right?
                        They're vampires. Why is resonance more disproved by science than walking corpses that get high on blood?

                        Sorry, but thematicallyManfr is right, justifying attribute increase through feeding on people with high attributes is a conceptual evolution of the effects of resonance, or at least a similar idea in general.

                        And you know one idea that faces even more ridicule in academic circles? The idea of getting stronger by eating strong warriors. Or of curing your boner problems eating desiccated penises, if you want to appeal to TCM as if it was an argument for fictional prose.

                        Originally posted by Vamps Like Us View Post
                        Actually just being made from elder blood gave you the extra dots before the need to purchase the age background to make you older and more powerful, but it's just a couple books that had low generation creation rules like that and you may not have played second edition.

                        If you are 5th generation in a round or two you have 8s in the physical stats, if you are 13th generation pumping 1 for a couple rounds you have 4s and at best, leaving no room to power disciplines, so you may not be able to pump your stats at all if you want to do other things. The 5th gen has plenty of room to power things like claws and celerity on top of stat boosting. There's very little chance the fight between two new characters even with similar starting physical abilities will not end up with the low generation vampire winning. If you don't want to call that a huge advantage, or want to complain about replacing spent blood when the 5th gen still has more in his body than the 13th gens maximum blood pool, even after a couple rounds of blood spent to max out stats and use disciplines, than I think your arguing semantics.
                        I played every edition of the game and I know those specific books, thank you very much.

                        Those books are meant for a specific style of play and not to represent a regular vampire of any Generation. You're either an Elder, defined as a vampire at least centuries old, or you are a fluke of the Embrace due to your sire being an Elder, still defined as a vampire at least centuries old.

                        Nothing in those books reads as their rules being standard for anything. They aren't. They aren't meant to represent a character with such Generation, they are meant to represent a character with the power of ages we've been talking all this time.

                        On the matter of how much power a lower Gen vampire has, sure they are more likely to win any fight against an equally skilled opponent. That's what an advantage means. Great, a Low Gen vampire is stronger, ceteris paribus. Only that in the process they spent 16 BP, but it seems that what I call hunt you call semantics, the point still being that it will be trouble to recover.

                        My arguing was never that Generation isn't an advantage. My arguing is that it is a minor advantage compared to more dots on other things. It is that a Fifth Gen with 3 Discipline dots, no more than that, and highest skill at 3, is weaker than a 13th Gen with 6 Discipline dots and highest skill at 5. That is my point, stop arguing against things I never said.

                        Also, I wasn't talking necessarily about fights, I was talking power in general. For clarifying beyond doubt why I think the Blood Pool isn't that a big advantage for a Neonate: hunting for more than 3 BP a night is always a hassle for a Neonate. It isn't in any way unfeasible, but is a pain in the ass. It can be done once in a while, but hunting that much regularly means a lot of trouble. A well established Elder has the resources in place to significantly increase how much blood they can have coming to them without trouble.

                        Which means any vampire, of any Generation, has a pragmatic limit on blood management. If this vampire thinks management only in terms of a single fight, they won't live long. It is about long term management, of knowing how much you can spend regularly without risk of depleting your reserves or straining your sources. Because your reliable sources, not your Blood Pool, dictate how much blood you can spend in a single night without worry and keep doing so every night.

                        You have the web of sources of an Elder, enough to guarantee two mortals killed every night for you, at the very least? That's 20 BP to burn without concerns every night doing your stuff. You have to hunt by yourself, with a success rate of 3.5 BP per night? Better not to spend more than 2 BP a night on other stuff than awaking, unless you really need to.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
                          They're vampires. Why is resonance more disproved by science than walking corpses that get high on blood?

                          Sorry, but thematicallyManfr is right, justifying attribute increase through feeding on people with high attributes is a conceptual evolution of the effects of resonance, or at least a similar idea in general.
                          .
                          The four humours aren't even common knowledge anymore. If someone wants to improve their Dominate, telling them to feed on people that are "Lazy, apathetic, calm, controlling, sentimental" just sounds like complete lunacy. Next we'll cure a cough by being passed over a donkey.

                          Feeding from athletes to siphon away some of their hard earned strength? Preying upon a boy genius for his smarts? That's intuitive. That's really, really intuitive.


                          (also: I run Disciplines are accumulated by HOW you hunt. Attributes by what you hunt. There's no room for resonances)
                          (also, I had this idea first)


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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MyWifeIsScary View Post
                            The four humours aren't even common knowledge anymore. If someone wants to improve their Dominate, telling them to feed on people that are "Lazy, apathetic, calm, controlling, sentimental" just sounds like complete lunacy. Next we'll cure a cough by being passed over a donkey.

                            Feeding from athletes to siphon away some of their hard earned strength? Preying upon a boy genius for his smarts? That's intuitive. That's really, really intuitive.


                            (also: I run Disciplines are accumulated by HOW you hunt. Attributes by what you hunt. There's no room for resonances)
                            (also, I had this idea first)
                            Do you mind explaining a little more? I am interested in how you run this. If they exclusively hunt with Presence or Obtenibration tenticles that is all you allow to be raised? or do you factor in other often used events? Does daily combat allow the physical disciplines to be raised or must they feed at the end of the battle? To raise ones Auspex do they have to make a game of tracking and hunting there prey followed obviously by feeding on them?

                            I guess I'm asking if they just need to use the discipline before blood drinking, or does it have to be worked in to the hunt in a way you feel it was instrumental to taking down the prey.

                            For example, Could I use Auspex to read an item and then drink a blood bag, no hunting involved?
                            Last edited by Vamps Like Us; 01-01-2022, 10:33 AM.

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                            • #15
                              For example could I read an item with Auspex then drink a blood bag, no hunting involved, or is the act of hunting important?

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